I'm not sure why I find myself needing to have a time of confession on this blog...perhaps it's because I'm hoping that I will encourage somebody else who struggles with the same issues, or maybe it's just because I find it cathartic. Whatever the reason, here I go again.
I vowed to myself and my family that I would not freak out this month. I promised that I would not go crazy over my "to do" list, that I would stay calm, create a fun month of memories for my family, and do it ALL while remaining even-keeled and stress-free. I was doing really well during days 1-15. And then the 16th arrived.
This weekend we sang in all three services at our church, and this morning, we woke up to find our van, home, and driveway under LOTS of snow. I got up with the early birds (Cody and Caden), but figured Jerry's alarm would eventually rouse him. So I left him sleeping.
I woke up to a house that looked like a hurricane had come through it. Granted, I knew this when I went to bed, so it was no surprise, but suddenly the daylight made it look a whole lot worse than it had the night before. Birthday gifts, paper, boxes, toys, clothes, and more strewn about in the living room. Dirty dishes piled up in the kitchen because I was too tired to tackle them last night, and Christmas staging areas all cluttered with wrapping paper, ribbon, tags, and the like. Projects to be finished, boots for every family member by the door, laundry piled up in the bathroom...the list goes on and on.
I need to say that I really am not a slob. I'm just a tired mom. This morning I woke up and felt like a failure. My house was a disaster! I tried to shake off the feeling that I should just stay home and clean and started frantically trying to get everyone ready. I finally yelled up the stairs and told the hubby to wake up and wake up NOW! I kept pushing everyone...."go- go- go" or "we're gonna be late, late, late!" Just as I was finishing drying my hair, I heard Cody say, "Oh NO!" and I walked in to find my darling toddler sprawled out on the kitchen floor with an entire, brand new box of cereal dumped out on the floor.
Now, I wish I could say I took it all in stride, but alas, I was not in that kind of a mood. Instead, I proceeded to fuss and fume over spilled cereal. He was seemingly unfazed, since he continued chomping away at the cereal...that had fallen on the floor.
Next, Cody spilled toothpaste down his nice button down shirt. You moms know this requires more than just wiping off...it requires a wardrobe change. And to top it off, just as we were ready to walk out the door...barely on time...I smell a poopy diaper that is demanding to be changed. My hair is still looking like a mop needing to be tamed and the van still needs scraping and warming. I was not a happy camper, and needless to say, all of this made for a tense Sunday morning for all of us.
This morning, our pastor preached the last sermon in his series on resolving relationship conflicts. Today's was all about communication, and boy was I convicted in so many areas. No doubt, God's timing is always perfect. It was just what I needed to hear. None of it was new to me, but just reminded me where I am still struggling. I praise God that tomorrow is a new day and that His grace is sufficient...even for me...this tired, frazzled mom.
As for the remaining days left in the month, I resolve once again to bring peace and calm back into my home. I know that with God's help, I can do just that. Tonight when we had dinner together and lit our third advent candle, we sat and reflected upon the gifts that the wise men brought to Jesus and how much value they held in that time. We talked about the word "sacrifice" and we told Cody the story about the woman who so lavishly poured expensive perfume at her Savior's feet. My spirit was quieted tonight, and I was reminded again that we celebrate this month not to have our homes and children in perfect order, but because of the Miracle that took place in Bethlehem.
That reminder is all I need to stop and pause before I'm tempted to blow up over spilled cereal.